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The Coffee Table(2022)(Review)

Well, well, well… Here we are with another review that is particularly difficult without spoiling anything – and trust me, you want to go into this as blind as possible. Bare with me as I unpack some things during the process.
The film opens with married couple Maria and Jesús at a furniture store where Jesús finds a coffee table he really likes. It features two golden women in a scorpion-esque pose as their elbows hold up the glass – he is obsessed, but Maria thinks it is the ugliest table she’s ever seen. They get into multiple fights over it, but Jesús ends up bringing it home despite Maria’s persistent attitude. After all, Maria got to design the entire apartment, the brand new baby’s room, the wallpaper colors, etc., Jesús just wants this one thing. Little does he understand that it might just be the worst decision of his entire life.

We are going to leave it at that – that’s more than I knew going on, but it only tells the first 10 minutes of the film so you’re okay for now. So for now, let’s do an imagination exercise together.

Ahem – imagine you are sitting at a dinner table with someone – let’s pretend it’s someone you really like. They reach their hand out and hold yours, before they slowly start slicing the top of your hand with a sharp knife. You’re in pain and bleeding, but they just smile and stare blankly into your eyes while this happens. Now, let’s say they start shoving literal handfuls of salt into the wound over and over for an hour and a half. They never break their eye contact or stop doing it, but after 20 minutes of silence they do finally ask ‘does this hurt?’ And no matter how you respond, they just continue to do it.

That’s what the experience of this movie is like. It is the epitome of dread from start to finish. Even if you have an idea what may happen, there’s so much tension in the buildup and what happens afterwards that this movie literally takes all the oxygen out of the room. It’s brutal, it’s disturbing, and it’s darkly hilarious all at the same time. Granted – it does have some cardinal sins going on that will absolutely trigger a lot of people, but that’s what sets this film apart from most dark drama/horror films you will see this year.

It’s not to be confused with a typical extremity film like I’ve covered many times, this certainly does not have really anything like that. But the very small amount of violence we do witness is so primal and realistic that it hurts so much more than you may imagine.

This is the feel bad movie of the year so far, much like ‘The Sadness’ & ‘When Evil Lurks’ were the past few years. Sit down with some headphones and brace yourself, this ride will have you begging for it to finish.

4.5/5

“The Coffee Table” is available to rent on Prime Video & Apple TV.

‘Til Next Time,
Mike Cleopatra

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